Why it’s Important to Talk to your Dentist About Opioids
Opioids are strong narcotic pain relievers that can be prescribed by a medical professional for the short-term management of pain. Some commonly prescribed opioids include Hydrocodone, Oxycodone, Morphine and Codeine. Although they can be effective in managing pain, they can also be dangerous and highly addictive.
Since there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to pain management, it’s important to have an open and honest discussion with your dentist about what’s right for you. They may be able to help you manage your pain without having to resort to using opioids. In fact, there are a number of other options available to help you manage the discomfort associated with dental procedures and oral surgeries.
Information about your medical history is key
Your family dentist needs to be made aware of your complete medical history before they can prescribe medication. Tell your dentist if you have any known medical conditions or if you’re pregnant or could be pregnant. They’ll also want to know if you or any of your family members have a history of substance misuse, alcoholism or drug addiction.
Your dentist needs to know about your current medications
Provide your dentist with a complete list of all the medications and supplements that you’re currently taking. Certain medications (e.g. medications for anxiety, sleeping problems or seizures) can have serious interactions with opioids.
You may want to find out about other options
Opioids aren’t the only type of drug used for treating pain. Ibuprofen, Acetaminophen and Naproxen are some examples of medications that can be taken to effectively manage your pain. Your dentist can provide you with more information on the options that are available to you.
You can learn how to reduce side-effects
Your dentist may decide that taking an opioid is the best method to manage your pain. You can reduce your risk of side effects by taking your medication exactly as prescribed. Here are some important things to know if you receive a prescription for opioids:
- Never share your medication with others
- Store your medication in a locked cabinet out of sight and away from children and pets
- Never mix opioids with alcohol or other drugs
- You should ask your dentist how long you need to take the drug and how soon you can switch to a non-opioid medication
- Dispose of any unused or expired medication safely by returning it to a pharmacy or take-back program in your area.
A dentist in Calgary you can trust
Forest Lawn Dental Centre offers a range of dental treatments for patients of all ages. We offer family dentistry, emergency dentistry, oral surgery and cosmetic dentistry services in Calgary. Dr. Sandhu and his knowledgeable and courteous team are available to answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to book an appointment.